Champagne Henriot is an independent champagne house based in Reims. It has been maintained by the family line since its inception in 1808, when it was founded by Apolline Henriot shortly after the death of her husband (with whom she had spent many years researching the development of wines).
1850 marked the first time Henriot became official supplier to royalty; the Imperials of Austria, who later extended their supply rights to include Hungarian royalty as well.
Today, the house owns 35 hectares scattered across the region for optimal grape sourcing. These holdings account for only 15-20% of annual production quantities (1.3 million bottles per annum).
Interestingly, one of Henriots top champagnes is it’s Cuve 38 – a Blanc de blancs (100% Chardonnay) varietal.
However, we today we are looking at the “entry” NV Brut Souverain. It is priced among the NV offerings from Bollinger, Roederer, Pol Roger and similar – stiff competition for potential drinker, especially when it comes to quality.
So how does it perform?
From: Reims, Champagne, France
Cost & Source: ~$90 a bottle available from Vintage Cellars
Blend Ratio (%): Pinot Noir/Chardonnay/Pinot Meunier (50/45/5) with 9 g/l dosage and 20% reserves.
Aging: 3 Years
Sipped: June 2017
In the Glass:
Look: Pale golden hue of good clarity, with fine strong bead (bubbles).
Smell: An inviting aroma that is mostly sweet, full of ripe fruit notes (Pineapple, Green Apple, Lemon) with a very faint trace of dough showing its time on yeast.
Taste: First impression is – this is delicious!
First sip arrives with a robust, strong hit of dry and tart – but soft – citrus. It showcase fruit flavours very well; Granny Smith Apple, Pineapple – some Mango Pit too.
Some might find it little too tart or sour.
Settling in, it sits nicely in the middle of the tongue for a long time, with notes of cranberry also noticeable.
A very enjoyable dry performer – as noted from its use of 45% Chardonnay.
Party Potential: This Henriot is too expensive for a party quaffer in the champagne bowl – and only for this reason do I not recommend it for parties (find better value). BYO this is a nice bring-along for a lounge sit-in with you best pals prior to a quality meal.
As a Gift: Henriot would make a good gift for a person you properly like – if your budget is around $100 and you don’t want to put forth the usual brands.
At Home: Given its uniqueness, I would save Henriot Brut Souverain for a small gathering of friends at home or a worth celebration.
Score & Verdict:
A unique number from a good family. Not one of the most well known faces about town, but certainly keeps pace with the others. They are also a little bit harder on the wallet than most, but a great time is guaranteed. How much are you prepared to spend to keep them about?
At $90 I feel it is only reasonable value for the quality – watch for it to go on sale.
How did I drink it?
Quiet night in with my partner.
How did you drink it?
And how did you find it? Let me know!
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